Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Off Balance

Off Balance. Dominique Moceanu. 2012. 256 pages. [Source: Library]

First sentence: When you have traveled the world, won Olympic gold, and gone through a very public court battle against your parents all by the age of seventeen, surprises don't come easy.

Premise/plot: Off Balance is the autobiography of gymnast Dominique Moceanu. The focus is not just on gymnastics. It is on her many aspects of her life, then and now. For example, here are a few things this one is about: forging a relationship with a sister she was clueless existed, her extremely tense relationship with the Karolyis, her love-hate-love-hate-love-hate relationship with an abusive father, her love-hate relationship with gymnastics, her love-hate relationship with her body, with weight, with food, exposing the harsher side of gymnastics.

My thoughts: I enjoyed reading this one. The chapters alternate, most of the time, between then and now. Readers learn about her parents arranged marriage, her parents coming to the United States, her parents struggle to make ends meet, her early years, her initial interest in gymnastics, the first coach she really, truly loved, loved, loved (in Florida), the move to Texas and the Karolyis gym, her first competitions as a junior and as an elite gymnast, her mistreatment at the hands of the Karolyis and her father, her journey to the Olympics, going on tour with other Olympian gymnasts, finding a new coach, injuries and setbacks, her failed comebacks, the court battle with her parents, her wild years, her settling down with a husband years, etc.

© 2017 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

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